West Bromwich Albion striker Saido Berahino has earned his maiden call-up to the England squad for the European Championship qualifier against Slovenia, and a friendly against Scotland.

The 21-year-old has scored 11 goals in all competitions this season and comes in for Daniel Sturridge, who continues to nurse a calf injury.

Arsenal winger Theo Walcott, Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick, and Everton's Ross Barkey are recalled after recent injury returns, while West Ham United's Stewart Downing is included by Hodgson for the first time since 2012.

The biggest omission from Hodgson's 26-man squad remains Sturridge, who despite travelling for Liverpool's Champions League game against Real Madrid in mid-week was never in contention to feature.

"That was never a realistic possibility," said Hodgson. "He is obviously still recovering and that is unfortunate. We were hoping of course to get him back but it hasn't worked out. Our medical staff have had contacts [with Liverpool] and I've left a message for Brendan [Rodgers]."

Walcott and Carrick have both earned call-ups after lengthy spells out with injury. The Arsenal forward has missed the last 10 months with a knee problem and has only made a 10-minute cameo for his club in the 3-0 win over Burnley.

Carrick meanwhile made his first United appearance of the season in the derby defeat to Manchester City, playing for just 48 minutes after coming on as a first half substitute.

Though both Walcott and Carrick have been permitted by Arsenal and United to join up with England for the international double-header, Hodgson's much-debated treatment of Sturridge and Raheem Sterling in recent internationals will lead to scrutiny over the duo.

Hodgson added: "With regard to Theo of course over the last two and a half years he has been an important member of the squad and we've had the misfortune of losing him for almost a year.

"He is fit again, but he is continuing with a fitness programme which we will have to make certain we do during the time he is with us.

"We have given him and his club the guarantee that we will do that and he is happy to be back and Arsene is happy for us to take him. I spoke to him and told him how pleased I was and happy that he could join us in the squad.

Daniel Sturridge
Daniel Sturridge is still nursing a calf injury Getty Images/Laurence Griffiths

"But I couldn't give him any guarantees over minutes but that is not to say he won't get any minutes either. He is coming back to us but I've had no thoughts in that direction. If he is fit and we can use him, we will."

On Carrick, the England boss explained: "Michael has been fit or available for a while actually. He was fit when we last played against Estonia and San Marino and it's taken him until now to be put back into the team.

"Michael plays in a position where we don't have many options. Michael is one of the best exponents of that [holding midfield] art."

England face Slovenia in a Euro 2016 qualifier on 15 November before taking on Scotland at Celtic Park on 18 November.

England squad:

  • Goalkeepers: Fraser Forster, Ben Foster, Joe Hart
  • Defenders: Leighton Baines, Gary Cahill, Calum Chambers, Nathaniel Clyne, Kieran Gibbs, Phil Jagielka, Luke Shaw, Chris Smalling
  • Midfielders: Ross Barkley, Michael Carrick, Stewart Downing, Jordan Henderson, Adam Lallana, James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Raheem Sterling, Andros Townsend, Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott
  • Forwards: Rickie Lambert, Wayne Rooney, Daniel Welbeck, Saido Berahino